- The flight
- Your checked baggage
- Your choice of seat
- Possible flight changes
- Select beverages
Customers determine value. A product or service has no value until it is assigned by the customer. Me.
Value is determined through a combination of a) the quality of the product or service, b) the responsiveness of the service provider in every single interaction, and c) the ability of the product or service to solve my problem.
Low quality products have little value. Those items that you bought at the dollar store over the weekend have a low quality. They might have solved your immediate problem, but if/when they break, you won’t be crying about it. Responsiveness (listening) builds value; when the barista at the coffee house remembers my coffee and preps it when I walk in the coffee house, I become a loyal customer. Finally, products / services have to solve problems. Every single company needs to understand that they are in the problem-solving business.
When you choose to segment your offerings into separate items, in some cases you are actually making it harder for your customers to deal with you. You are punishing them instead of rewarding them.
How about this – all flyers get one checked bag free. Always. On every route. If they show up to the check-in counter without a checked bag, you instantly give them a $20 voucher that can be applied to their next flight. Fully transferable and always redeemable. Let customers use as many of them together as they like! This would be seen as a massive bonus, a victory instead of a punishment.
Charge people once, then pile on all of the products and services that give greater quality, that show me you’re listening, and that solve my problems.
Porter Airlines has figured this out. Porter is a regional airline that has chosen very specific routes to maximize passengers and minimize costs. They use the same planes on most/all of their routes. Very efficient. When you purchase a ticket to fly on Porter, you get the flight, two carry-on bags, one checked bag, in-flight snacks and beverage (both non-alcoholic and alcoholic) all included. Everything you need to get from, say, Toronto to Boston is included. No additional fees, no extra costs. This also means that each time you see a Porter staff member, their only role is to make sure your travel is smooth and to thank you for flying Porter Airlines.
Businesses have the opportunity to create offerings, but customers always determine the value. Every single time business makes it harder or put the work back on the customer, the value of the offering suffers.
Value is a perception, not an equation.